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Water-Resistant & Waterproof Hearing Aids: What’s the Difference?

A study published in the journal Trends in Hearing reports that the seven most preferred attributes of hearing aids include, “performance in quiet settings, comfort, feedback, frequency of battery replacement, purchase price, water and sweat resistance, and performance in noisy settings.”

The purpose of this post is to focus on the water-resistance feature – more specifically, the difference between hearing aids that are water-resistant versus those that are waterproof.

What Are Water-Resistant Hearing Aids?

Close-up of hearing aid near senior patient's ear at audiology clinic. Hearing solutions, hearing BTE aids

Water-resistant hearing aids can repel water if splashed or exposed to sweat, thanks to a protective Nano-coating on the shell, but they cannot be submerged. You can tell how water-resistant a hearing aid is based on the IP rating – the higher the rating, the more water-resistant.

Most modern hearing aids have some degree of water resistance.

What Are Waterproof Hearing Aids?

Waterproof hearing aids can withstand being submerged – within limits. Sealed housing and a battery door that closes tight with silicone mean there are no seams for water to penetrate within 30 minutes at a depth of one meter.

There is currently only one hearing aid on the market that is waterproof to this degree.

How Can I Protect My Devices from Moisture?

As you can see, even the most waterproof devices have their limits when it comes to moisture, which is why it’s important to protect them and limit moisture when possible. To do this, we recommend:

  1. Wiping them down. Wipe your hearing aids down with a soft, dry, clean cloth to remove any moisture from the shell when you take them out at the end of each day.

  2. Opening the battery doors. This not only extends your battery life, but also allows moisture to evaporate at night.

  3. Investing in a dehumidifier. Perhaps one of the best things you can do for your devices is to invest in a dehumidifier to store your devices in overnight.

  4. Getting sweat covers. If you enjoy working out at Colaw Fitness on 19th Terrace, get some sweat covers to protect your devices.

To learn more or to schedule an appointment with a hearing aid expert, call Topeka Ear Nose & Throat today.


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